April 3: we woke up in the rain to break camp — not cool. Our aim was to make it 7 miles to woody gap — a place that intersects a minor highway. As we were traversing a narrow mountain path, the rain turned to a freezing rain thunderstorm. Scary and miserable. We made it to woodys gap in about 5 hours and joined two other hikers huddling under a park map. The storm raged on and about a dozen other hikers came off the trail and joined under the sign. We finally got through to a shuttle driver from the nearby town of Dahlonega.

30 mins later Hans arrived with a minivan sporting jumper cables protruding from the drivers window to under the hood. Hans announced that he couldn’t fit any more hiker “meat” in his vehicle than five. I, of course, made sure that our “meat” made the first cut. I jumped into shotgun (wondering where the shotgun was undoubtedly hiding) and discovered that a large car battery was at my feet with cables leading out the drivers window. Remembering that I was in north Georgia, I thought nothing of it. While driving through the breakneck mountain curves mostly in the on coming lane, Hans pointed out that if anyone didn’t like his driving, he would slow down so that they could jump out. Not long after that, we began to lose power halfway through a switchback curve. This inspired Hans to bark at me that I was not minding the cables and to get them cables straight. I assured Hans, and moved my knees to prove that I was indeed minding the fucking cables. Notwithstanding my resolute minding of the cables, we fizzled out to a stall right in the middle of a blind curve. Hans, clearly familiar with the predicament, jumped into traffic and collected a new battery from some where in the back. Hans swapped the battery at my feet, reminded me of my duty to mind them cables, and jumped back into the drivers seat before we got ass-rammed by the next vehicle coming around the blind curve. Everything was fine until hiker Colin, from Texas, sporting a cowboy hat, announced that he had to take a leak. Hans barked to the back seat “are you fucking serious, Texas?” Texas was serious. While he was taking a leak, too long for Hans purposes, the mini stalled again. Hans was equally incensed at me for not minding the fucking cables, and at Texas for taking too long to piss. After I again proved that I was indeed minding the fucking cables, Hans announced that we ought to call Texas “private joker” from now on. So when Colin got back from his admittedly lengthy piss, he was greeted with his new trail name of private joker.

It should be noted that everyone in the trail goes by a trail name and never uses their given name. So, Henceforth Colin will be known as Private Joker. Joe and I don’t have trail names yet, they have to be given to you.

After Hans retrieved a third battery from the back, he swapped it out at my feet and, you guessed it, told me to mind them cables. I had to say to Hans, “and when have I not minded the fucking cables?” He conceded that I was minding them pretty good.

Someone please add that little piece of north Georgia cred to my resume. Let it never be said that McMenamin don’t mind cables.

After one more stall, we were dropped at the Quailty Inn where Joe and I, freshly showered and fed, are now enjoying CNN like never brfore.

A different shuttle is collecting us, with Private Joker in tow, to take us back to Woodys gap to blaze on at 8 sharp.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s